Olivia Cattabriga / Art Director

Anna Sheppard

Equinox Staff

In Peterborough, New Hampshire, there is a professional theatrical group called the Peterborough Players Club that performs summers and winters to bring professional theatre to the Monadnock region.  According to their website, for 86 years, from June to September and December to February, the program has featured performances and offered New Hampshire a wide variety of performing arts events. The Players’ mission is to bring the love of the arts to those who appreciate it as much as their founders and life long workers do. The program equips its “players” with the experience of a lifetime, and no matter the focus, workers gain knowledge in any detail of performing arts they wish and are given an outlet for their creativity.

Many Keene State alumni go on to participate in the countless opportunities the program provides. Alumni Jacob Dennis Lavoie spoke about his experience with the Peterborough Players. “At the time it was really difficult. The hours were long, the work was tough, but looking back on my time there in 2017, it really prepared me for work in professional theatre,” Lavoie  said. He was a part of the Second Company as an acting apprentice and in the technical positions as well, primarily focusing on costumes and props.

Plenty of Keene State students received jobs and contributed much of their time and effort to the program. Tim Goss, who started out in the summer of 2016 as the accompanist for the Second Company shows said, “Peterborough has helped me hone my skills in a professional setting with professional actors. It’s also enormously expanded my network of theatre contacts.” Within his experience with the Players, Goss served as a musical director for the department as well as being Associate Music Director and keyboard player for the main stage musicals,.“It can be grueling, some of the hours, especially as interns/Second Company members, but it’s incredibly rewarding for actors to learn what it’s like to work both on stage and off stage with professionals,” Goss said.

Dana Angellis worked with the scenic carpentry as an intern in 2014 finishing in 2018 as a stage manager. “I worked my way up the ladder and had a lot of ‘firsts’ at the Peterborough Players, as well as learned the ins and outs of Equity contracts and rules that I continue to use today,” Angellis said. “I would absolutely recommend Keene State students to apply/audition for the Peterborough Players Second Company.”

Lavoie continues his craft as an Atlanta based choreographer, director and dancer. “I have met many other players alums across the country,” Lavoie said.

Goss currently is a freelance theatre pianist and music directs shows all over New England while being an accompanist for UNH’s theatre courses. “I now have contacts with people in New York and am planning to move there this January. It has expanded my musical theatre knowledge as well as made me more professional in even the most amateur of settings,” Goss said.

Angellis is currently a freelance stage member and a member of the actors’ Equity Association, a union for professional actors and stage managers in the U.S. “I work all over the country stage managing for regional theatre,” Angellis said. “My time with the Players gave me the confidence and connections to go out and apply for other jobs. It gave me the experience to further my career and I would not be where I am today if it were not for the Peterborough Players.”

“The Peterborough Players have $20 student rush tickets to every show, as long as there is ticket availability, and a valid student ID,” said the director of marketing, Bridget Beirnne. She said she hopes KSC students apply for the company’s internships and use this opportunity to pursue the theatrical arts.

Anna Sheppard can be reached at


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